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Nelly Furtado teased the release of her sixth studio album The Ride after dropping lead single “Pipe Dreams” in November. Now, the Victoria-born musician has followed it up with another single, “Cold Hard Truth.”
Furtado debuted “Cold Hard Truth” with a live performance on Late Night with Seth Meyers, during which she wore an ensemble completely made of pieces designed by queer people of colour. Her live vocals were on point, proving that her musical prowess is far from gone, even after a four-year hiatus since her last studio album, The Spirit Indestructible.
The song, produced and co-written by John Congleton (who has worked with the likes of St. Vincent, Sleater Kinney and Franz Ferdinand), is synth-heavy with a consistent, driving rhythm—and yes, that is indeed a cowbell in the background.
Furtado shows us a side that’s wildly different from both her folksy “I’m Like a Bird” days and her more sultry “Promiscuous” phase, but we’re definitely digging it.
She posted both a teaser video for her new album as well as the cover art back in November, which both suggest she’s going in a direction that’s experimental and possibly even a little bit psychedelic. In the teaser video, Furtado explains that she named her album after the ride of life.
“I think that’s why I’m calling my album ‘The Ride’ is because it is high. It is low. It is ugly sometimes. It is beautiful sometimes. It is heartbreaking sometimes. It is joyous and thrilling sometimes. But if you could stay like yourself, then you’ll be able to get on those rides and you’ll be okay,” she says.
She also released a short film for the album last Friday, which shows Furtado speaking to Canadian singer/actor Tabby Johnson and American musician Nicole Miglis about feminism, art and the perception of beauty. Later in the video, Furtado brushes sand off of a long piece of paper that has The Ride’s 12-song tracklist on it, including “Cold Hard Truth” and “Pipe Dreams.”
The Ride drops on March 31.